Each year, school districts spend a considerable portion of their budget on energy to power their schools. Any steps a school can take to reduce energy will not only save money, but also conserve power and reduce fossil fuel emissions. Conserving energy and using clean power will directly contribute to improving air quality and public health.
School administrators that have instituted energy conservation programs report the savings have been substantial – in the tens of thousand of dollars per year! Often, it can be done by performing simple steps, such as turning off lights and computers when not in use, limiting the time to heat hot water in the cafeteria, or using energy efficient products. Schools can actually lower their energy bills using simple steps, even when more energy consuming equipment is placed online.
Schools can refer to the DES Air Resources Division, Climate Change web site for available information on school energy efficiency programs, and design of new school (green) buildings. Many of these programs are available through the Office of Energy and Planning.